Performance of advanced air-breathing propulsion systems can be significantly improved through the utilization of effective sealing devices. One of the areas in which immediate benefits are realizable from improvements in sealing efficiency is the high-pressure compressor end area. This paper describes the design of a face-type flexible seal and a face-type rigid seal for a compressor end seal based upon the cruise conditions expected in one version of the supersonic transport (SST) jet engine. The seals, non-contacting during operation, operate on air films achieved through the employment of hybrid gas-bearing geometries on the seal faces. The design procedure discussed consists primarily of the selection of the most applicable seal-face geometries force and moment balance, determination of seal tracking capability, establishment of leakage characteristics, thermal gradients, and stress and deflection calculations. The design results indicate that satisfactory seal performance can be obtained with either of the two configurations. Leakage reductions of an order of magnitude compared to that encountered with labyrinth seals commonly used in existing jet-engine systems can be achieved.

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